The U.S. reported more than 121,000 new coronavirus cases Friday, the third day in a row the nation has recorded more than 100,000 new infections.
Infections are surging in all regions in the United States as the COVID-19 death toll continues to climb.
U.S. hospitalizations have significantly increased, forcing hospitals in Midwestern and Southern states to take urgent action to accommodate floods of new patients.
Midwestern states have been especially hard hit, with a record number of infections reported in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Minnesota, North Dakota, Nebraska and Oklahoma.
Since the surge in the U.S. began in mid-September, some states have periodically imposed piecemeal lockdown measures, including Maine, which has extended its mask- wearing requirement to apply to all public spaces.
Officials in Denver, Colorado, on Friday urged residents to stay home between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m. to try to reduce a growing wave of coronavirus cases.
India’s health ministry said Saturday that it had recorded more than 50,000 new coronavirus cases and nearly 600 coronavirus-related deaths in the previous 24-hour period.
India has a total of 8.4 million COVID cases, according to Johns Hopkins statistics. Only the United States has more cases, with its 9.7 million tally.
The International Monetary Fund approved a $370 million extended credit facility arrangement for Afghanistan on Friday. The IMF said in a statement that the 42-month arrangement “aims to support Afghanistan’s recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic, anchor economic reforms, and catalyze donor financing.”
France, Italy and Russia reported new daily records for coronavirus cases Friday.
France registered 60,486 new confirmed coronavirus cases on Friday, after posting a record of over 58,000 on Thursday, health ministry data showed. The ministry also reported 828 new deaths.
Italy announced Friday 37,809 new coronavirus infections over the previous 24 hours, the country’s highest ever, while Russia also recorded its highest daily tally at 20,582.
Britain began a four-week lockdown Thursday, while Greece begins a three-week shutdown Saturday.
Anyone traveling from Denmark to Britain must now self-isolate for 14 days. Denmark was removed Friday from Britain’s corridor of travel, following a coronavirus outbreak on mink farms in the Scandinavian country.
Denmark has announced it is culling more than 15 million minks to halt the spread of a mutated form of the coronavirus that has appeared in the minks.
Authorities ordered more than a quarter of a million people in a northern region where the mink farms are located to go into lockdown. There is no evidence the mutation poses a threat to people, but officials said they were taking no chances.
In Italy, new coronavirus restrictions were imposed on Friday. Under the so-called soft lockdown, the country has been divided into three zones according to the severity of the outbreak, with differing restrictions for each zone.
In Pakistan, authorities said they would impose a mini lockdown in selected areas of major cities to try to stem the tide of coronavirus cases. The country reported 1,376 new cases and 30 deaths from the coronavirus on Friday.
In South America, the situation is brighter in Ecuador, where the infection rate has plunged 44% to 800 new cases a day.
Source: Voice of America